Grass Valley man held on formal assault, robbery charges |

Grass Valley man held on formal assault, robbery charges

Jerry Delgado

During back-to-back hearings in court, officers testified that Jerry Delgado lunged at a man with a knife, and then robbed another man of drugs and cash just two days later after he was released from jail.

Nevada County Superior Court Judge Linda Sloven conducted two preliminary hearings for Delgado on Tuesday. In the first case she found enough evidence after that hearing to hold Delgado to answer on a felony count of assault with a deadly weapon, as well as a misdemeanor count of possessing drug paraphernalia reportedly found on his person during a search. In the second Sloven found enough evidence to hold Delgado on felony charges of robbery and first-degree residential burglary.

Delgado, 31, is set to be formally arraigned Oct. 19 on all charges.

Grass Valley Police Officer Matt Whiting testified about the first incident, which happened March 24. In that incident Delgado was accused of attacking another man with a knife.

Whiting testified that he had responded to Gates Place and was told that Delgado had been arguing with Matthew Madsen. A third man, Aaron Campbell, told Whiting he saw Delgado had a knife, grabbed a car antenna to protect Madsen and hit Delgado with it.

Delgado had made threats to kill Madsen and Campbell, and had lunged at Campbell three times with the knife, Whiting said.

Whiting testified he had no direct knowledge of the confrontation. He said Campbell told him that he hit Delgado in the head with the antenna after Delgado advanced on him with the knife.

Grass Valley Police Sgt. Dale Norvell testified that he interviewed Delgado, who said he felt outnumbered and had pulled the knife to protect himself after Madsen “presented his dukes.”

Delgado told him “the argument was stupid to begin with,” Norvell said.

While Delgado’s defense attorney, J. Lon Cooper, argued that Delgado was acting in self-defense, Deputy District Attorney Cambria Lisonbee told Sloven there was no validity to that argument.


Grass Valley Police Officer Brian Covella testified that he was dispatched to the scene of the second incident, a reported robbery on Dorsey Drive, on March 26.

The victim, James Rayburn, told Covella that two men, one of whom he identified as “Jerry,” had come to his apartment earlier that day to sell him methamphetamine.

Rayburn said about two hours later, he opened his door to a knock, thinking Jerry was back to smoke meth with him.

Instead, Covella testified, both men were there, dressed in black with masks covering their faces. Rayburn told Covella the second, unidentified man pushed his way in, followed by Jerry.

Rayburn tried to push the second man back and the suspect then began punching him in the face, knocking him to the ground, Covella said.

Jerry began collecting items while the second man held Rayburn on the ground, holding a knife to the back of his neck, Covella said. According to Rayburn, Jerry took $150 in cash, six cartons of cigarettes and a small wood box holding meth he had just bought, as well as a pipe and other items before both suspects fled.

Covella testified that while returning from an in-field showup of a man later determined to not be a suspect, Rayburn pointed out Jerry’s apartment. That apartment was found to belong to Delgado’s grandmother, Covella said, adding that Rayburn later identified Delgado from a photo.

Contact reporter Liz Kellar at 530-477-4236 or by email at

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